Business Buzz

Janet Shirley joins League City team
League City has selected Janet Shirley to serve as the city’s director of Human Resources and Civil Service.

She worked for the Columbia Pipeline Group as the Human Resource and Recruiting Strategy manager prior to being selected for this position and also served as Lockheed Martin’s Human Resources manager for Houston Programs and is a U.S. Navy and Navy Reserve veteran.

A League City resident for more than 10 years, she attained a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Hawaii at Manoa in Honolulu; and a Master of Science in Human Resources Management from Chapman University in Orange, Calif.

Ambulatory Surgery Center is planned
Bay Area Regional Medical Center and Medistar Corp. are planning the  development of a new Ambulatory Surgery Center at Gemini III, located on Medistar’s three-building Gemini Medical Campus at Gemini Avenue and Buccaneer Lane in Clear Lake.

Featuring state-of-the-art equipment, the new surgery center is configured with 2 special procedure rooms and 4 operating suites with future expandability to a total of 6 ORs. Gemini I and II are fully leased to orthopedic surgeons, pain management and primary care physicians. On the same campus, the Gemini III surgery center is the latest partnership of Bay Area Regional with leading surgeons to serve patients in a modern and convenient outpatient setting.

Hospital CEO Tim Schmidt said, “Bay Area Regional is excited to join with leading physician partners on this important initiative. Our new surgery center will provide best-of-class, patient-centered outpatient services, with a focus on excellent orthopedic, spine, neurological, general, ENT and pain management surgical care for our Bay Area Houston community.” Plans are now underway, with construction scheduled for completion in late 2017.

In Webster, Medistar also is developing a new 70-bed skilled nursing facility and 60,000 SF medical office building. These projects further complement the rapid growth of Bay Area Regional, which Medistar is currently expanding from 104 to 191 total beds.

Tools developed to combat Zika
New research from The University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, in collaboration with Southwest University in Chongqing, China and the University of Leuven in Belgium, have developed a way to replicate the basic structure of the Zika virus, stripping it of the genes that make the virus infectious. The replicon system research was spearheaded by Dr. Xuping Xie and recently published in EBioMedicine.

Replicons are segments of viral genome that can replicate on their own, independent of the cellular chromosome. The new Zika replicon system has deleted some of the genes that give the virus its structure. Because of this, the altered Zika virus is no longer infectious, lowering the safety risk involved in working with the virus.

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